Pricing dropping for penstock project |

Pricing dropping for penstock project

Steve Puterski

The search for coating for the Lahontan Reservoir penstock continues.

Mark Solinski, hydro foreman at the dam for the Truckee-Carson Irrigation District, updated the board of directors during Tuesday’s monthly meeting.

Solinski said the past month has yielded more estimates for the project and may cost less than the $900,000 reported to the board during the December meeting. He will meet with an interested party Jan. 14 at the dam for another estimate.

The lifespan of the coating, however, appears to be less than initially reported, Solinski said.

At the December meeting, he reported of a coating with a span of 75 years, but upon further research, Solinski said it appears a 20-25 year lifespan is more typical.

The current coating on the penstock was applied in 1990, he added.

The penstock is the “main artery” and carries water from the reservoir to the two hydroelectric plants at Lahontan. Should the seal suffer severe cracks, it would prevent the district from creating electricity, which provides TCID with a large portion of its revenue.

In other TCID news —

Walt Winder, deputy project manger, reported an incident on New Year’s Day where a man crashed his pickup truck into the Truckee Canal.

The vehicle rolled several times for “a couple hundred feet” off the dirt road and into the canal upstream from the head of tunnel 3. The man, who was not identified by Winder, survived the crash, the freezing water in the canal and was able to walk back to Fernley.

Ken Parr, area manager of the Lahontan Area Office of the Bureau of Reclamation in Carson City, said the district should send an invoice to the man to recoup money spent removing the truck and for losses of water.

Winder also detailed issues with ice at Gilpin Spill.

The spillway mechanics were frozen due to continual sub-freezing temperatures, but the district was able to melt the ice using about 2,000 gallons of hot water.